Thursday, January 28, 2010

Critiques...Therapy?

Here is a subject I have posted about before but I felt like expanding on it.
I met with my critique partner last night and realized how important it is to have someone really look at what you are writing.  I was not sure if having someone critique a first draft was a great idea because it is in no shape to be read but now I think it has helped me in more ways than one.  I have learned so much in the past few months that I already know what to change and how to change my WIP--yes Kelly I know finish it first :)
Having a critique partner(s) helps in more ways than just making sure your I's are dotted and your T's crossed.  I know this is CP's job --to make sure your WIP is the best it can be but I have learned that a CP helps in getting to the heart and soul of your story --

Does it make sense?

Is it consistant?

What do you want the reader to feel?

What is the family tree of your chracters?

and the list goes on (endless questions are discussed and answered)


Having a CP is great for getting feedback whether it is good or bad.  I believe this is helping me become better at what I am trying to achieve.  Accepting the good is easy and the bad --well--sometimes strikes the ego but I take it for all it is worth.  I find the negative feedback (not hurting someone's feeling here--more on the stuff that needs work) helps me really look at my WIP and really try to figure out how to make it better.  I am sure this is all common knowledge to someone who is more of an expert than I am but I thought I needed to share.

My tip--Get feedback no matter where you are in you WIP.

Another helpful tip I have learned is that having a CP is like having a therapist.  Writing is an emotional rollercoaster. Finishing your novel, trying to get an agent, and getting your baby published can break even the most strong hearted down to tears but having support and someone who can listen and understand where you are coming from is priceless. I have been dabbling in writing for over ten years and never had the guts to let anyone read anything I have written but here I am putting myself out there. My family supports me too and they are pretty critical but it is also nice to talk to others apart from my personal life who cheer me on and teach me how to be a better writer.  So thank you Kelly, and my loyal fellow bloggers. 

So that is it--my son is rising from his nap and my time is up.

What characteristics do you look for in a critique partner? How has your critique partner helped you? How has blogging helped you? And a question out of the blue--how have you gained more followers on your blog?

10 comments:

  1. I like the idea of creating a family tree of my characters. Can you imagine what JK Rowling had to do to keep track of her civilization?! It would be like the drawing room at Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place X 100.

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  2. I would be lost without crit. partners and feedback. I tried for too long to do it on my own. Big mistake. Feedback is manna from heaven to a writer. :)

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  3. Right back at ya! You've helped me soooo much...oh, geez...now I have fix Ame's thing!!! Ahhh...back to the drawing board ;)

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  4. Jonathon--Tell me about it-- I can't imagine how much time was spent on creating the world of JK Rowling.

    Shannon-God Bless you for trying to do it on your own.

    Kelly-Just minor changes --you will figure it out.

    Thanks guys!

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  5. I love making family trees!

    I love having my betas for critique. It's an enormous feeling of support while I'm writing.

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  6. I love having you and your kids in my family tree :)

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  7. You are very lucky to have such a helpful critique partner!

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  8. First - let me say that your music playing here is swell.. I added several to my own playlist.

    "I want to meet where soul meets body..."

    cheers.

    Second - I have to hurry and get ready for work now. I'll be back.

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  9. Oh, I definitely think critique partners are like therapists. Sometimes you love them, sometimes you wish they'd just tell you the easy way out, but they're always there to listen.

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  10. Mariah, Karen G, Elena- Thanks for your comments and your support.

    Shelby-Thanks for visiting and thanks for your feedback on my music. I wondered if anyone liked it.

    CMCcane-love you too :)

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